The Burning House (Casa que arde)

Burning House
(Theatre piece for anarchist girls and stuffed animals)

Based on “The house of Bernarda Alba” by Federico García Lorca

Staged by Maricel Alvarez & Emilio Garcia Wehbi

Konzert Theater Bern, Switzerland, 2015


The title “Burning House” quotes, in part, a famous phrase by Spanish anarchist Buenaventura Durruti (1896-1936), killed during the Spanish Civil War, which in turn was a quote from an original phrase by Russian anarchist Peter Kropotkin, who said: “The only enlightening church is a burning church”.

Thus, it is from the anarchist postulates that this staging revisits Federico Garcia Lorca’s play “The House of Bernarda Alba”. The family, taken as the basic structure of microfascism, religion as the oppressor of man’s free will, and the home as women enclosing place under phallocratic mandate, all these seem to turn this version towards a more explicitly political territory than the original. In order to avoid that underlining, both the text and the staging thrive on materials of diverse natures that pollute and veil its conceptual essence. Therefore, the visual and textual universe of American brut artist Henry Darger (1892-1973) and his saga “The Story of the Vivian Girls, in What is Known as the Realms of the Unreal, of the Glandeco-Angelinian War Storm, Caused by the Child Slave Rebellion”, lists of psychiatric medications taken from a vademecum, or Michel Onfray’s texts where an ethical hedonism is proposed as a “Theory of a Body in Love” are all part of its formal and conceptual guidelines, which focuses its strategy on the oppressive structure of male discourse which, to this day, still holds the female body hostage in every culture around the world. In this manner, it attempts to be a poetic reflection on gender issues.

Text for the program brochure / Konzert Theater Bern, 2015

Actors: Henriette BlumenauKirsteen HaardtSophie HottingerMona KloosJonathan LoosliMilva Stark / Dancers: Pauline BriguetBeatriz Navarro BaenaIzabela OrzelowskaMarion Zurbach / Musicians: Johanna GreulichEllen FallowfieldLouisa MarxenClemens Hund-GöschelStephen Menotti / Girls Chorus: AnoushJulia BeldiEna BeyliJulia Sophia BillPaula Flurina BillSahar BitarNyama FrauchigerAmélie FunkeCéline FunkeElla GfellerPina HugAnna StalderRonja StukerLara Von NiederhäusernVanessa Zesiger / German translation: Johannes Schrettle / Assistant to the directors: Michaela ChristMario Matthias / Photos: Philipp Zinniker / Dramaturg: Karla Mäder / Costumes: Senta Amacker / Set: Frank Holldack / Music: Eunoia Quintett / Choreography: Lisi Estaras / Text: Emilio García Wehbi / Directors: Emilio García Wehbi Maricel Alvarez

April 2015
May 2015
June 2015
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